Aging Gracefully Writing Contest Winner: Mary Beth Ions!
The Winning Essay has Been Selected!
The Aging Gracefully writing contest rules stated that essays had to inspire, encourage, or promote the health and wellness of today’s actively aging population. The judges of Aging Gracefully and The Villager Newspapers agreed that Mary Beth’s essay stood out, even though there were many excellent essays turned in.
Mary Beth Ions Won $150 prize!
Mary Beth Ions may enjoy writing, but she’s also a popular professional violinist who was recently playing beautifully for Jesus Christ Superstar musical (from the Broadway Series).
The staff of Villager Newspapers agreed that Mary Beth’s inspiring essay followed all the contest rules and is especially relevant during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Here is the winning essay:
Bette Davis once said, “Old age is no place for sissies.” I don’t know at what age “old” begins but all seasons of a person’s life come with their share of challenges. We perceive challenges as inevitable but as we age we often view them as insurmountable. We do, however, have a choice. Aging gracefully is a decision.
LEMONS INTO LEMONADE
The Coronavirus has shifted our paradigm. Nothing is, at least for now, as it was. What an oddly perfect time to incorporate new ideas (safely!) into your life. Spring is coming. Listen to birds, lawnmowers, children and all the other sounds you hear once windows are open. But listen to yourself, too. What is your body saying? if you feel stiff, you need to move. Lack of light and seemingly endless gray days take their toll. Getting outside for even a short walk will clear your mind and give your soul a new perspective. Look at buds on trees and bright protrusions of green everywhere and envision what will soon burst forth. Notice the blue sky and feel the sun. Pet a (friendly) dog. Pay attention to everything. Breathe deeply and just let your mind turn off for a bit. Our brains can be kaleidoscopes of thought and worry. CHOOSE to let go and breathe.
SILVER AND GOLD
An old song refers to “gold” as old friends and “silver” as new friends. As we age, we might begin to lose our precious gold. Please know the sun will continue to rise and your life will go on. There are senior center facilities in almost every community. Many are bright and vibrant and offer a big range of fun. Go to one (when permitted). Play cards, swim, sign up for a bus trip or dinner outing. Chances are you’ll enjoy yourself and welcome new friends into your life!
A SILVER LINING
There IS a silver lining to aging. The wealth of knowledge, unique skills, and life lessons seniors offer is enormous. Volunteer to read to kids, offer a lonely neighbor some fresh-baked bread (and conversation!), drive folks to voting locations, be present and aware of opportunities to make the world better.
Our lives can be tapestries of connection. Why not participate and discover your purpose at ANY age!
THANK YOU to Mary Beth Ions! You can learn more about Mary Beth by clicking here to watch last year’s interview of her on Aging Gracefully TV.
Read more of the writing contest essays by clicking here!
Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comment box below…
10 thoughts on “Winner of the Aging Gracefully Writing Contest!”
Thank you Bill! And there indeed is joy out there. Sometimes you find it and sometimes it finds YOU!
I am so happy Mary Beth won. I decided not to enter this time, as I had won a prize before. Once my decision was made, I didn’t finish my essay as I just knew this was another’s time and I was right. My theme was SAD, seasonal affective disorder, and not only did Mary Beth touch on it, her essay was rich with so much more than this subject and had I entered, I believe she would have still won, hands down! Congratulations and all the best to Mary Beth Ions!
Thank you for your very kind comments! This was my first writing contest so I was a little sheepish. Your comments have inspired me to do more writing.
Thank you again!
I enjoyed your essay Mary Beth. There is joy to share!
Congratulations, Mary Beth!
Nice essay! You are upbeat and encouraging, things we all can use these days! Thank you for your eloquent writing, you inspire me. 🙂
(happy follower of K. E.)
Tina, thank you so much. Trying to remain upbeat and positive these days can be a challenge. Hopefully when we are on the other side of this we will appreciate even more the beautiful aspects of life.
Very nicely stated, Mary Beth. May you have many years ahead to age gracefully and share your message.
What a nice sentiment and right back at you! Enjoy all the good things (big and small!) life has to offer. We’re all in this together!
Nice thoughts Marybeth. You’re buying with the prize money !
You are funny! I know YOU are aging gracefully and keeping your sense of humor…a must in these troubling times!
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